Thanks to everyone who left comments and/or emailed on the wedding dilemma post!
Annie was the first to comment and suggested 1001listes. I thought that sounded like a good idea, so I checked it out - they do work with quite a few more stores (including Darty) and the prices were much more reasonable. So I started to look around and add items to our "panier". When C got home, I showed it to him, and he was immediately suspicious (as he often is of French websites - and maybe rightly so?). He figured there must be a catch somewhere, and after what Emily said, I started hunting around on the internet for reviews of the site. Some were very positive, but others claimed it was very difficult to actually use the money they'd received, especially for some of the bigger stores like Darty or Decathlon.
For those places, you had to find what you wanted to buy (FYI: discounted and sale prices don't apply!!), call up 1001listes, ask for a gift certificate for the exact amount and then wait for them to process it and mail it to you by registered letter (on your dime to boot). Then you could take your certificate to the store and cross your fingers that the price hadn't changed between now and then or it was back to the drawing board. There were also pretty big fees for using the money at non-partner stores (15%+) or if you didn't use it all up within a year.
Overall, it is still a good option because the site has been fairly-well translated into English and it does let people from all over the world contribute to it, but it sounded like just too much hassle and paperwork to me. (Also, C looked up their finances online and they have lost money for the past few years, so he was also worried about them going bankrupt and us losing our moola- same for Zankyou too btw). But funnily enough, while doing my research, I also learned that the site had first been bought by TF1 and then more recently by Galleries Lafeyette.
I did really like the Amazon.com idea that several of you suggested though. I didn't realize beforehand that Amazon.com could ship outside of the US, or that you could set it up automatically so that people could send the presents straight to you (at their cost). I also like that they have a really great selection of products at good prices - no 500€ pillows there!
So after much thought, I think we are going to use Emily and Meredith's idea of a honeymoon website, where people can purchase various items for the honeymoon, and then also have a small Amazon.com registry for the Americans who don't feel comfortable giving towards a honeymoon.
Now we just need to figure out how to inform people - I guess we have plenty of time still since the American reception won't be for several months after the wedding. But from what I'm seeing online, it's sort of gauche to include anything about presents in the invitations? Instead, you are supposed to include the address for your wedding website, and then on there have links to your registries. Who knew this was all so complicated?? (But then again, I'm definitely not the queen of etiquette...)
I always swore I wouldn't do a wedding website, but looks like I may end up having to do one after all...so much for trying to keep things simple, right?
Labels: Franco-American weddings